A poetic need

I had been pondering for a while today what I might post, and nothing seemed to want to stick. I’ve got seven hundred and forty three different things in the wings, so I could have posted on just about anything. Then, of course, inspiration struck and I wrote something.

It’s a sexy something. Are we surprised? Enjoy, lovers!

click to enlarge

Yeah, what she said!

Completely agreeing with someone else’s opinion is a rare thing. I agree with poet Alice Fulton and what she recently said about poetry in an interview with The New Yorker’s Book Bench though.

Funny that I find so many things to love on The Book Bench.

Anyway, what Fulton says about poetry is right in line with how I see it, being a bit of a poet myself. And here it is, for all to see!

How do you define poetry? What distinguishes it from prose?

Poetry emphasizes music, rhythm, reticence, multiplicity. These qualities, present in prose to varying degrees, are intensified in poetry, framed and underscored by the poetic line. The language of poetry is more distilled and oblique than the language of prose, which tends to be purposeful. A newspaper, for instance, is written to convey information efficiently. We don’t linger over news stories, reveling in the language, mesmerized by the unsaid. A poem, on the other hand, invites readers to fill in the blanks. It lives in the space between words. Like a joke or a koan, a poem can’t be explained. It has meaning, but it doesn’t have a “message;” its stratas are too vast and complex to be neatly summarized. There are unspoken implications at every turn; you have to intuit it, “get it.” It’s recursive, an infinite regress.

Read more http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/books/2010/07/our-poets-on-their-poetry-alice-fulton.html#ixzz0v7mIHsw1

And that, my friends, is what she said.

Because I haven’t been home all day

Because I haven’t been home all day, I have had no time to blog — scandal! I’ve been doing really well at posting once every day though, which was a goal I decided to revisit, and so I don’t intend to not post just because I don’t have something terribly insightful or lengthy to write. Nope, you won’t be getting thoughts on anything big today, but you will be getting small, short thoughts on some pretty random things, instead.

And so, in no particular order, here are some thoughts on this and that — just because:

1. Those Facebook Recommended Pages sure do know how to share some penetrating wisdom! Many people who like Music, also like Friends; many people who like Love also like Life — gee, no shit, Sherlock.

2. There sure are a lot of songs on my iPod that include the word “one” in their title.

3. Sitting in a room with someone else, saying very little and being productive is a lovely way to spend time.

4. I have learned that the less walking I do, the less mentally stable I am; it’s done wonders for my figure and for my mind.

5. I bloody well love Helen Mirren.

6. I also love Paul Bettany.

7. I once read a romance novel: just one, and just once.

8. Writing with pen and paper is extremely satisfying.

9. Holding a live sea-urchin in your hand is truly amazing.

10. I aim not to underestimate those around me because, if you’re watching, you might just see the best show of your life.

The date: July 27th, 2010

The time: many different times

The place: my mind

The purpose: fun

The verdict: Sara’s to tired to be blogging, but she still loves you, she swears!

My love/hate relationship with Twitter

Sometime back in the boring-ness that was this winter, I decided that I would start using Twitter. Why not, right? There were all sorts of things one could discover while tweeting and following, including day-to-day nonsense from celebrities, the thoughts of politicians (as filtered through a specially selected Twit who has the time to tweet, unlike the actual people themselves), and what your friends are saying, doing, feeling and trending during the day. When you’ve got little to do, it’s certainly a great diversion.

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Happy Homesick Sunday all!

So, as anyone who knows me can attest, I am habitually homesick on Sundays. This has come to bother me less and less lately, which is nice, but I still miss my parents and my brother (annoying as he can be, I still love him dearly) a load. To cope with this yearning for home, I often get nostalgic and search for things from my younger years so I can conjure up the feeling of being home.

On today’s agenda:  TV shows. Two of my favourites, actually. I think Sundays are the days I most curse my decision to not own a television (a decision I feel I should revisit for the coming winter, as winter in Newfoundland can be unreasonably depressing without the loving glow of a television set). But anyway, back to business.

Who doesn’t love some trivia? I mean, really — it’s great fun, especially when you can sit on your couch, in your pajamas, excitedly guessing answers while not making a fool of yourself on national television when you get them wrong. This is exactly the reason why every kid should watch Jeopardy with their parents. That, and it’s great for learning random trivia facts with which to confuse one’s friends and family members (which is excellent fun). I suppose this means I’m a bit of a nerd, but if that’s the case, then I absolutely revel in it. Trivia = love.

As an addendum, I also totally love to play Trivial Pursuit. The way to my heart goes not only through the OED, but through the question cards from the Trivial Pursuit Genus Edition.

Speaking of an obscene amount of knowledge, the next TV show I have a significant attachment to (and a particular nostalgia for) is Frasier. My mother and I watched Frasier together all the time, as it used to come on NTV every night at 7:30. It’s slightly embarrassing for me to admit, but I had a crush on Frasier. Honest — I totally did. My mother had a thing for Niles, which I thought was too hilarious for words, but Kelsey Grammar as Frasier Crane made me unreasonably happy: he knew a lot and was a bit of a snob, but was just bumbling enough to make me laugh and make him more human. Last Christmas there was a Frasier marathon on TV Tropolis and you’d better believe I watched the entire thing from start to finish.

And this is why, my friends, I spent so very much time by myself as a kid: liking trivia and Frasier doesn’t make one incredibly hip now, does it? …and it probably still doesn’t! Ah well, I’ll be cooler in the next life.

I hope.

Harold Pinter tells it like it is (in a letter)

Discoveries like this are the reason I read the New Yorker’s Book Bench: Harold Pinter, in 1966, wrote a letter to a student who wrote to him inquiring about several possible hidden meanings within Pinter’s play The Caretaker. Pinter responds by basically saying, “Everything is the way it is because that’s the way it is”, and does so in the most straightforward (and sarcastic) manner possible. He, evidently, was not one to attach much meaning to things in his writing. Or at least not in this particular play.

I admire the way he addresses the questions in such a straight way, allowing no room for misinterpretation. Sometimes, stuff is just stuff. The letter reminds me keenly of high school and how frustrating it was (particularly with poetry, but certainly with plays) to sit and read something over and over in an awkward attempt to discover the meaning behind this, or the symbolism of that. Of course, one would inevitably hypothesize something off-base from time to time and be told that that particular interpretation was wrong. That interpretations could be “wrong” has always been a sticking point for me; it still is, and probably always will be.

The thing about a person’s interpretation of an event, an object, or otherwise is that it’s just that — an interpretation. And of course, it’s subject to that person’s perspective. I’m not saying that every interpretation of something is right as that’s not the point of studying literature. I’m saying that an interpretation that misses the mark is perhaps not well enough informed or coming from an untrained eye. This concept easily translates into life as, if you consider the way a person perceives an event or an object in life, it may not be exactly what was intended by that event or object in the first place. Pinter certainly didn’t intend particular meaning to things in his piece, but there could be any number of people who would find meaning by placing it there, themselves. I think, from time to time, that’s the point of a piece — to prompt that sort of exploration. My grade six teacher (a man to whom I owe many things, including one of the best years of my school life) always said that literature is a representation of life, and left it at that. Certain things within a piece can be meant to evoke things, but they don’t always have to mean something, as Pinter so bluntly expresses in his letter.

And sometimes, just sometimes, it’s nice to read/watch something that actually is that straightforward (before plunging back into something torturously loaded with meaning, of course).

Can’t blog — writing poetry.

I admit that I am a little peeved at myself for not having written a post with significant length this week, but it’s been a long week and my brain is not only tired, but also screaming at me to write poetry. And when one’s brain “strongly encourages” that one should write poetry, it’s nigh-on undeniable.

So, instead of writing the lengthy post I had planned for this evening, I will leave you with one of my favourite bits of poetry (it’s Shakespeare, are you surprised?).

If music and sweet poetry agree,

As they must needs (the sister and the brother),

Then must the love be great ‘twixt thee and me,

Because thou lov’st the one and I the other.

Dowland to thee is dear, whose heavenly touch

Upon the lute doth ravish human sense;

Spenser to me, whose deep conceit is such

As passing all conceit, needs no defense.

Thou lov’st to hear the sweet melodious sound

That Phoebus’ lute, the queen of music, makes;

And I in deep delight am chiefly drown’d

When as himself to singing he betakes.

One god is god of both (as poets feign),

One knight loves both, and both in thee remain.

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